Hard-drive crashes, spilled coffee, and thieves can obliterate the precious data on your laptop. Your best defense is to back it up. External hard drives, DVDs, CDs, or even "the cloud" are great ways to protect your data.
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External Hard Drive: Use an external hard drive, usually connected via USB.
Hard drives are spacious, inexpensive, and easy to connect to multiple machines. And they're portable, so they can travel with your laptop. But like internal hard drives, external drives are mechanical devices, and they can fail. It rarely happens, but when it does, stored data can be gone in an instant.
CDs: Burn backups onto CD-R or CD-RW media.
CD media is inexpensive and easy to store offsite; you might even put them in a safe deposit box. And since your laptop is sure to have a CD burner, it's convenient to back up your files whenever necessary.
CDs are good for backing up important documents, but with only up to 700 MB of storage space, you may want to consider other options for larger files like your music and movies. It's also a good idea to store them in a safe, cool place to avoid losing them or making them susceptible to damage from heat and scratches.
DVDs: Store backups on recordable DVD media.
Because DVDs are relatively large (up to 4.7GB to 8.5GB, depending on format), they're a great way to back up photos, music and videos. DVD-RW drives are common in newer laptops and the software that came with the burner makes it easy to format and use those high-capacity discs. But be warned: Writing a big batch of files to a DVD can be a slow process, and DVDs are just as susceptible to damage as CDs.
Cloud Services: Backing up to an Internet-based provider.
When you back up to "the cloud" you're really uploading your files to an Internet-based storage provider who will keep them safe in a data center. Usually automated, these set-and-forget services never run out of space and can back up data in real time, so you're always covered. Even if your house burns down, your data will be safe. You will have to pay a monthly service fee, and not everybody is comfortable leaving their data in someone else's hands. And if the provider goes out of business, retrieving your files could be a hassle.
Whether you're backing up to the cloud, a drive or a disc, Samsung's Recovery Solution 4 makes it easy to back up your laptop with little more than a mouse click. Though some of these options are more convenient than others, any of them will store data - and that's the most important thing. So make a choice and stick with it. Think of backing up your data as critical basic maintenance, like brushing your teeth. Just think of how it would feel to skip that.
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